QuickBooks Online For Dummies book cover

QuickBooks Online For Dummies

By: David Ringstrom Published: 02-23-2022

Get a handle on the world’s most popular cloud bookkeeping and accounting app

QuickBooks Online comes second-to-none in providing simple and powerful bookkeeping and accounting features that can streamline your business, make you more profitable, and organize your company’s finances. But if you’re not quite sure how to make it all work, or if you just want to get a grip on its newest features, QuickBooks Online For Dummies is the companion you need to make the most of your favorite cloud accounting software.

This book walks you through each and every step of creating an invoice or credit memo, recording a sale, paying bills, setting up and managing your inventory, and tracking your business checkbook and credit cards. It also includes:

  • New updates on exporting data to Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets so that you can analyze your business data new ways.
  • Stepwise walkthroughs of how to install and set up a new instance of QuickBooks Online for your business or personal accounts.
  • Exclusive tips for bookkeepers and accountants working with clients in QuickBooks Online, including new techniques for automating monthly reports that you create in Excel from data that you export from QuickBooks.

Whether you’re a small business owner, an accountant, a bookkeeper, or just someone trying to help their boss keep up with their accounting records, QuickBooks Online For Dummies is the resource you need to make the most popular cloud bookkeeping and accounting software in the world work for you!

Articles From QuickBooks Online For Dummies

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QuickBooks Online For Dummies UK Edition Cheat Sheet

Cheat Sheet / Updated 03-02-2022

You can make the most of your work in QuickBooks Online (QBO) and QuickBooks Online Accountant (QBOL) using handy and time-savings shortcuts and tool buttons. Using QBO keyboard shortcuts means that you can seamlessly access various windows and pages without touching a mouse. The various icons at the top of the QBO page help you quickly search for items, create new items, or display transactions.

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QuickBooks Online For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Cheat Sheet / Updated 02-18-2022

You can make the most of your work in QuickBooks Online (QBO) and QuickBooks Online Accountant (QBOA) using handy and time-savings shortcuts and tool buttons. Using QBO keyboard shortcuts means you can seamlessly access various windows and pages without touching a mouse. The various icons at the top of the QBO page help you quickly search for items, create new items, or display transactions.

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How to Search QuickBooks Online Lists for People

Article / Updated 10-26-2019

You can use the Customers, Vendors, and Employees pages in QuickBooks Online (QBO) in a variety of ways. The Contractors page is more limited than the rest; from it, you can search for contractors and prepare 1099s. From the Customers, Vendors, or Employees pages that list all the people in those categories, you can sort the people in the list, export the list to Excel, and perform actions on a selected group of people on the list. You also can print a basic report by clicking the Print button on any list page; the Print button appears just above the Action column. How to work with a particular person in QBO You can select a particular customer, vendor, or employee and view the transactions associated with that person as well as the person’s details, and you can attach files to the person. Here, you'll work with customers. To search for a particular person, type some characters that match the person or company name in the Search box that appears above the list of people. When you select any person from the list, QBO displays the page specifically associated with that person. The page has two tabs; in the following figure, you see the Transaction List tab; the other tab is Customer Details. If you have enabled the Projects feature in your company, QBO displays a third tab called the Projects tab, which lists any projects you have created in your QBO company. From either tab, you click the Edit button to edit information about that person, and you click the New Transaction button to add a transaction associated with that person. From the details page of a person, you can attach files to keep track of important financial information. For example, you can attach a vendor’s 1099 document, a customer’s contract, or an employee’s receipts. You’re not limited to text documents; you also can attach photos. Simply drag and drop the item into the Attachments box at the bottom left side of the appropriate details page; if you prefer, you can click the box and a standard Windows Open dialog box appears so that you can navigate to and select the document you want to attach. Each attachment can be no larger than 25MB. To view documents that you’ve already attached to a person, click the Show Existing link below the Attachments box and QBO opens a pane on the right side of the page showing the linked attachments. You also can add attachments to a transaction. To view transactions that have attachments, you add the Attachments column to the table that appears on the person’s Transaction List page. Display the person’s Transaction List page and then click the table Gear button above the Action column. From the list that appears, click Show More. Show More changes to Show Less and a check box for Attachments appears; click it and the Attachments column appears as part of the table grid. You can identify it as the column heading with a paper clip. Displaying the Attachments column for one person displays it in the Transaction List table for all persons of that type. If attachments exist for any particular transaction, you’ll see the number of attachments in the column. Clicking the number lists the transaction’s attachments; clicking an attachment in the list opens that attachment. You add attachments to the various transactions as you create them; only attachments associated with transactions appear on the various Transaction List pages, and attachments associated with a person appear on the associated person’s page. When you finish working with one person, you can easily switch to another in that list using the list’s Split View list pane. You can click the Split View icon (shown in the preceding image) to display a pane listing the people stored in the list (see the following image). From the list in the Split View pane, you can scroll down to find a person, or you can type a few letters of the person’s name or company name in the Search box at the top of the list to find that person in the list. Or, you can sort the list by name or by open balance. Click a person to switch to that person’s page. To add a new person to the list, click the plus (+) symbol at the top of the list in the Split View pane. To display the Customers page, click Customers at the top of the Split View list or click Sales in the Navigation bar and then click Customers. To close Split View, click the Close Split View button. Sorting a list in QuickBooks Online In addition to sorting in Split View, you can sort the lists on the Customers and Vendors page by name or open balance. By default, QBO sorts the entries on these pages alphabetically by name in ascending order. You can sort employees in alphabetical order and reverse alphabetical order, by pay method, or by status (active or inactive). You can’t sort contractors; QBO, by default, sorts them in alphabetical order. To change the sort order for the Customers or Vendors lists, click Sales or Expenses in the Navigation bar and then click Customers or Vendors to display the appropriate page; for this example, I use the Customers page. Next, click the heading for the column by which you want to sort. If you click the Customer/Company column heading, QBO displays the customers in descending alphabetical order. If you click the Open Balance column heading, QBO sorts the list in Open Balance order, from lowest to highest. How to export a QBO list to Excel You can export a list of your customers or vendors to Excel. If you don’t have a copy of Excel on your computer, you can download and use the free mobile version of Excel. Click the appropriate link in the Navigation bar (Sales or Expenses) to subsequently display either the Customers page or the Vendors page; the Vendors page is used in this example. At the right edge of the page, just above the Action column, three buttons appear. Click the middle button, and QBO exports the list to an Excel file; a button for the file appears at the bottom of the screen in Chrome. Click the button at the bottom of the screen, and Excel opens the file. You can edit the file if you click the Enable Editing button in the yellow bar at the top of the window. And, for those of you using Excel mobile, you need to sign in using your Microsoft account to edit the file. How to work with a batch of people in QBO When you work with customers or vendors, you can take certain actions simultaneously for a group of people. For example, you can select specific vendors by clicking the check box beside each name and then send the same email to those vendors, pay bills online for the selected vendors if you are using the Bill.com add-on with QBO Essentials, Plus, or Advanced, or make the selected vendors inactive. You can use the Bill.com add-on to pay bills online from QBO; there is a full-service Bill.com app, but here, I’m talking about the add-on to QBO. You’ll find the Bill.com app available in the Intuit App Center. You can visit the store by choosing Apps from the Navigation pane. There is no monthly subscription fee for Bill.com, but there is a per transaction fee for each payment you process. For customers, in addition to sending email, you can create and send statements to them, assign the selected customers to a customer type (you use customer type to group customers), and make the selected customers inactive. To use one of these actions for a group of people, click the appropriate link in the Navigation bar—Sales or Expenses—followed by the appropriate list page to display the associated page. For this example, I used the Customers page. Next, click the check box beside the names you want to include in your action and then click the Batch Actions button. Select the action you want to take, and then follow the prompts onscreen to complete the action.

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Products and Services Items in QuickBooks Online

Article / Updated 10-26-2019

The Products and Services list is the QuickBooks Online (QBO) equivalent to the QuickBooks Desktop product’s Items list. You display the Products and Services list by choosing Gear→Products and Services. In the following figure, the compacted view of the list is shown so that you could see more products; you select the compacted view from the table gear on the right side of the page. You use the Products and Services list pretty much the same way you use the Customer and Vendor lists; for example, you can search for an item by its name, SKU, or sales description. You can identify the columns you can use to sort the list if you slide your mouse over the column heading; if the mouse pointer changes to a hand, you can click that column to sort the list using the information in that column. How to establish categories in QBO Categories replace sub-items and are available to all subscriptions that use sub-items except for those who migrate from QuickBooks Desktop. You can use categories to organize what you sell and, using various Products and Services reports, hopefully help you better understand what people are buying from you. Categories do not affect your accounting or your financial reports, and you cannot assign categories to transactions. You also can use classes and/or locations to help further catalog transactions and financial information. You can create new categories as you create items or, if you prefer, you can click the More button on the Products and Services list page and choose Manage Categories to create categories so that they are available as you create items. Yes, you can do both. From the Product Categories page shown in the following figure, you can click the New Category button to add a category; the Category Information panel appears on the right side of your screen and you simply supply the category name. If the category is a sub-category of an existing category, check the Is a Sub-Category box and select the name of the existing category. Click Save at the bottom of the panel to set up your category. You can create sub-categories up to four levels deep. That is, you can create a category called Clothing and then create a sub-category of Clothing called Shoes. For the Shoes sub-category, you can create a sub-category called Women’s Shoes, and, for the Women’s Shoes category, you can create one last sub-category called Sneakers. You can’t create a sub-category for Sneakers, but you can create another sub-category for Women’s Shoes called Dress Shoes. If necessary, you can edit an existing category; click the Edit link beside the category you want to modify in the table on the Product Categories page. Once again, the Category Information panel appears, displaying the category’s current information. Make changes and click Save; alternatively, you can click Remove to remove a category. The effect on items of removing a category depends on whether you remove a sub-category or a category. If you remove a sub-category, QBO moves the items assigned to it up one level. If you remove a category (with no sub-categories) QBO reclassifies the items as uncategorized. How to set up sales taxes in QBO Don’t freak out; this is a lot easier than you might be imagining. QBO contains a wizard that literally walks you through the process, asking you easy questions such as your address and whether you need to charge sales tax outside your state. Setting up sales taxes before you set up items makes your life easier. Why? Because QBO uses the sales tax information you supply as you set up items. If you don’t set up sales taxes before you set up items, you’ll have to go back and edit all your items for taxability. Yuk! QBO tracks and reports sales tax automatically for companies operating on the Accrual basis of accounting. Further, QBO automatically calculates sales tax on transactions if you set your QBO company accounting basis to Accrual. So, what should you do if your company operates on the Cash basis of accounting? Set your company accounting method to Accrual before you set up sales taxes (click Gear→Account and Settings→Advanced). Then, set up sales tax and then change your accounting method back to Cash. Be aware that the Sales Tax Center will track your sales tax liability on the Accrual basis, but you can use the Sales Tax Liability reports to identify the correct amount of sales tax to pay. The first time you click Taxes, QBO prompts you to set up sales taxes. Click the Setup Sales Tax button. If you haven’t already entered your company’s address in QBO, the wizard prompts you to supply your address. If you have already entered your address, QBO displays it onscreen for you to verify. Click Looks Good when your address is correct, and then click Next. The wizard then asks if you need to charge sales tax outside your home state; choose No or Yes, as appropriate; if you click Yes, you identify the additional states where you charge sales tax. Click Next. QBO next asks you when your current tax year starts, how often you file sales tax returns, and the date you started collecting sales tax for your taxing agency. Click Got it!, and that’s it—your sales taxes are set up. As part of QBO’s set-up process, it marks all existing customers as tax-paying customers. If you have any customers who don’t have to pay tax, such as government agencies, schools, and charities, edit those customers (Sales→Customers→Edit) and, on the Tax Info tab of the Customer Details dialog box, uncheck the This Customer is Taxable check box and supply exemption details such as the reason the customer is exempt from sales tax and the customer’s exemption certificate ID. You might also want to attach a copy of the exemption certificate to the customer on the Customer Details page in QBO. Adding service and non-inventory items You can create inventory, non-inventory, and service items, and you can edit batches of items to change their type. 1. To display the Products and Services list, choose Gear-->Products and Services. 2. Click the New button. QBO displays the Product/Service Information panel on the right side of your screen where you select whether you’re creating an inventory item, a non-inventory item, a service, or a bundle. 3. Click a type to select it. This example uses Non-inventory item. You create a service item the same way you create a non-inventory item, supplying the same kind of information shown in these steps. QBO then displays the panel for the type of item you chose; the following figure shows the Non-inventory panel. 4. Supply a name for the item and, if appropriate, a stock keeping unit (SKU). You also can select the item’s category. You can upload a picture of the item by clicking the Upload button and navigating to the location where you store the picture. 5. In the Sales Information section, you can a. Select the I Sell This Product/Service to My Customers check box and supply a default description, b. Supply the price you charge when you sell this item, and c. Select the income account associated with the item; if necessary, you can establish a new account. QBO uses this information when you select this item on sales transactions. 6. Make sure a check appears in the Is Taxable check box if appropriate, and choose one of the predefined entries that appear in the Sales Tax Category and What You Sell lists. 7. To display the Purchasing Information section, place a check in the I Purchase This Product/Service From a Vendor check box and then, if necessary, click the Show More link at the bottom of the window. 8. Supply a default description, the cost you pay when you purchase the item, the expense account associated with the item, and, if you want, the vendor from whom you prefer to purchase the item. QBO uses this information when you select this item on expense transactions. 9. Click Save and Close. QBO saves the item and redisplays the Products and Services list; the new item appears in the list. How to create an inventory item Creating an inventory item has a few additional types of information you need to supply. Supply the quantity you have on hand and the date on which you determined the quantity on hand. You must supply an As Of date or QBO won’t let you save the item. If you intend to enter historical transactions that use the item you’re setting up, make sure that you enter an As Of date early enough to accommodate those transactions—typically the beginning of your fiscal year. Remember, before you can sell an item, you must own some of it. If you don’t own any at the time you create the item, you’ll probably buy some of it using an expense transaction, and that will update your quantities for you. If you’re using QBO Plus, you can supply a reorder point. Define your reorder point as the minimum quantity you judge that you need on hand at any given point in time. QBO uses the reorder point you establish to monitor the quantity of the item in stock, and when the quantity on hand falls equal to or below the established reorder point, QBO reminds you to order more. You can set a reorder point after you have created an inventory item; find the item in the Products and Services list and click Edit in its Action column. Then, supply the reorder point and click Save and Close. You also can use the Products and Services list to see the items for which you have specified reorder points that are low or out of stock. At the top of the list, shown in the following figure, click Low Stock to filter the Products and Services list to show only items for which you have specified a reorder point that are also low on stock. Click Out of Stock to view items for which you have specified a reorder point that you don’t have and should consider ordering. QBO defines “low stock” as an item for which you have specified a reorder point and for which you have one or fewer on hand. To order a low-stock or an out-of-stock item, click the arrow in its Action column and choose Reorder from the drop-down list that appears. QBO creates a purchase order with the item’s information filled in. Complete the purchase order and send it to the supplier. Be aware that QBO creates only one purchase order for the items you select. To send purchase orders to multiple vendors, select the items to reorder for a single vendor, click Batch Actions—which appears above the Action column after you select an item—and then choose Reorder. Then, repeat the process for items to reorder from a different vendor. You can easily cancel the filter for Low Stock or Out of Stock items. Once you select one of these filters, an X appears in the upper right corner of the filter graphic. Click that X, and QBO redisplays the complete Products and Services list. How to work with bundles in QBO If you are using QBO Essentials or QBO Plus, you can create bundles to group items that you often sell together. If you were a QuickBooks Desktop user, think of a bundle as a group item in the desktop product. A bundle is not an assembly; QBO doesn’t create a bill of materials for a bundle, nor does QBO track a bundle as a separate item with a quantity and separate cost. That means QBO doesn’t track quantity on hand for bundles. If you weren’t a QuickBooks Desktop user, think of a bundle as a collection of items—both products and services—that a customer buys from you at the same time. For example, assume you run a landscaping business that sells water features as well as lighting, trimming, and fertilizing services. If a customer buys a water feature, you typically need to sell the customer the water feature itself, concrete to set up the water feature, and a pump to pump the water through the water feature. You can set up the three items needed to create a water feature—the feature, the concrete, and the pump—as a bundle, because you’ll need to sell all three at the same time. The idea behind a bundle is to make selling easier by placing all the items in the bundle on a sales form in one step rather than making you separately add each item that makes up the bundle to various sales documents. You can use bundles on Estimates, Invoices, Credit Memos, Sales Receipts, Refund Receipts, Delayed Credits, and Delayed Charges. Bundles aren’t available for purchasing documents nor can you add a bundle to a price rule. To create a bundle, follow these steps: 1. Choose Gear→Products and Services to display the Products and Services list. 2. Click the New button to display the Select a Type panel. 3. Click Bundle. QBO displays the Bundle panel shown here. 4. Provide a name, an SKU if appropriate, and a description to appear on sales forms for the bundle. 5. In the Products/Services Included in the Bundle section, check the Display Bundle Components When Printing or Sending Transactions check box if you want to list, on sales documents, the components included in the bundle. 6. Use the table grid at the bottom of the panel (see the following figure) to identify the products included in the bundle. a. Click Show More to expand the panel so that you can add additional items to the bundle. b. Click in the first row of the Product/Service column, and QBO displays a list box you can use to select an item to include in the bundle. c. Supply a quantity for the item. d. Repeat Steps b and c for each item you want to include in the bundle. A bundle can include up to 50 items. And, you can reorder the items in the bundle by dragging the graphic that appears to the left of each item (the one that looks like nine dots). e. When you finish adding items to the bundle, click Save and Close. QBO saves the bundle; you’ll find it at the bottom of the Products and Services list. To use the bundle, you simply add it to a sales document the same way you add any product or service to a sales document. See Chapter 6 for details on adding products and services to sales documents. And, once you add a bundle to a sales document, you can edit the items included in the bundle, adding or deleting them as needed. The price of a bundle equals the sum of the bundle’s components. You can discount a bundle, but you cannot mark up a bundle nor can you track quantity on hand for a bundle; remember, a bundle isn’t an assembly. You can search for bundles the same way you search for any product or service. Use the Search box at the top of the Products and Services list to search by name or SKU. How to use pricing rules in QuickBooks Online Using pricing rules, currently a feature in beta testing but available in your QBO company if you enable it, you can control product prices. For example, you can Offer discounts on specific products. Increase the price of specified products. Offer special pricing to all or some customers. Make special pricing available for a specified period of time. For former QuickBooks Desktop users, pricing rules are similar to price levels; particularly, QBO doesn’t record a price change as a discount but rather as an override of the sale price. You can’t add a bundle to a price rule, but you can work around this issue if you add items included in a bundle to a price rule. Then, when you subsequently add the bundle to a sales document, the bundle will reflect the price rule pricing. To use pricing rules, turn the feature on by choosing Gear-->Account and Features-->Sales and editing the Products and Services section to turn on price rules. You can set up as many price rules as you want, but less than 10,000 works best in QBO. To create a pricing rule, choose Gear→Lists→All Lists. On the page that appears, click Price rules and then click Create a Rule. QBO displays the Create a Price Rule page shown here. On this page, supply a name for the rule, the start and end dates for the rule, the customers who qualify, and the products or services to which QBO should apply the rule. Specify how to adjust the price: using a percentage, a fixed amount, or a custom price. Indicate whether the rule is a price increase or decrease and how you want QBO to handle rounding. When you finish, click Save or Save and Close. When you create a sales transaction, QBO automatically applies any appropriate price rule to the transactions.

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How to Manage Your Practice in QuickBooks Online Accountant

Article / Updated 10-26-2019

Before diving into using the QuickBooks Online Accountant (QBOA) tools available while you work in a client’s QBO company, take a look at the Work page in the Navigation pane, which functions as a practice management tool. Having such a tool in QBOA enables you to centralize practice management, because all team members in your firm have access to the Work page in QBOA. It’s important to understand that your clients don’t see the Work page—it is available only in QBOA, so only you and your team members see the Work page. Further, the information each team member sees on the Work page is specific only to his clients—the ones to whom your team member has access. The Work page enables you to track what needs to happen for both your clients and your own firm. And, although the terminology used on the Work page refers to projects, bear in mind that these projects are entirely different from the projects your clients can create in QBO. The Grid view in QBOA When you click Work in the Navigation bar, QBOA displays the default Grid view of the page. The Grid view displays task cards organized into date ranges (Due Today, This Week, Next Week, and in the Next 30 days). Each task card of a given project identifies the client for whom the work needs to be done (or, your own firm, if the project isn’t for a client) as well as the project name. Uniquely on each task card, you’ll find the task name. You can control some of what you see on the Grid view of the Work page. For example, you can filter the page to display information for all clients, your firm, particular clients, or specific team members. The Work feature also uses data in client QBO companies to automatically display deadlines you need to meet and things you need to do, such as payroll deadlines and reconciling connected banking transactions. If you don’t want to see this automatically created information, you can click the From QuickBooks slider. At the present time, the Work feature automatically suggests actions to take associated only with QBO; the Work feature doesn’t connect to other products like ProConnect Tax Online. Because the Grid view organizes tasks by due date, you won’t see any type of visual connection between tasks; that is, no lines appear, connecting tasks to each other, because the Grid view isn’t a flow chart. Grid view isn’t the only view available on the Work page; you can read about List view and Calendar view later in this chapter, after I discuss creating projects and tasks. How to create projects and tasks You can use the Work page to create client requests. With respect to practice management, you use the Work page to create projects, which represent things that need to be done. You break each project down into tasks, which are subsets of the project that provide more detail about what needs to be done to complete the project. You create tasks as part of a project, but you can assign different team members to different tasks on the same project. Projects are typically general things you need to accomplish by a specified deadline date, and tasks describe the specific things you need to do to complete the project. As you create a project, you assign a deadline date to the project, and you assign due dates to each task in the project. You identify the client with whom the project is associated and the team member who has responsibility for the project. Or, you can specify that the project is an internal one that affects your firm but not any of your clients. QBOA contains project templates that help you quickly create commonly needed projects, such as Monthly Bookkeeping or Client Onboarding. When you use one of these templates, QBOA creates not only the project but all the tasks associated with the project. You can then edit the project as needed. Creating a project To try to keep this information as easy to follow as possible, we'll create projects separately from creating tasks—even though you can, and probably will, create tasks when you create projects. To create a project, follow these steps: 1. Click Work in the Navigation pane. QBOA displays the Work page for your firm. 2. Click Create Project in the upper right corner of the page. QBOA opens a panel on the right side of the page that you use to create a project. 3. If your project falls into one of the predefined template categories of Bi-weekly Payroll, Client Onboard, Monthly Bookkeeping, or Yearly taxes, select the template from the Project Template list box. QBOA adds the tasks associated with the project template to the project, assigning each task a due date of “tomorrow.” 4. Fill in a name for the project. If you selected a project template, QBOA fills in the project name using the project template name. 5. From the Firm or Client list box, select the QBO client with whom the project is associated. If the project applies only to your firm and no client, select My Firm. 6. Set a project due date. The due date you set for the project is a constraint; if you add tasks to the project, you won’t be able to set due dates for the tasks that occur after the end of the project. 7. Using the Assigned To list box, assign the project to one of your team members. You can add details for the project if you want. Some projects, like reconciling a bank statement, need to repeat on a regular basis; for those projects, click the Repeat slider to set up the timeframe QBOA should use to repeat the project. Working with tasks Now that you’ve created a project, you can work with the project’s tasks. You can Add and delete tasks, Change the due dates QBOA assigns to the tasks, and Reorganize the order of tasks in a project. 1. Add a task to a project by clicking the Add a Task button at the bottom of the list of tasks. QBOA displays a form for task information (see the following figure). 2. Supply a task name, due date, the team member to whom you want to assign the task, and any pertinent details about the task, such as the QBO commands used to accomplish the task. There is no limit to the number of tasks you can create. 3. To work with a different task, collapse the one you’re currently working on by clicking Collapse in the lower right corner of the task card. You don’t save individual tasks; instead, you save the project, which saves the task information. 4. To delete a task or change its information, click the task. QBOA displays the details of the task. To change the task, simply supply the new information. To delete the task, click the Remove link. 5. To change the position of a task in the project, collapse it and then drag the square symbol at the right edge of a task up or down. You can see the symbol you drag to reorder a task. 6. Click Save to save the project and its tasks. QBOA redisplays the Work page, and your new projects and tasks appear on it. How to update task status in QBOA As you make progress on a task, you can update its status directly from the Grid view of the Work page. Click the down arrow on a task card to change its status. Tasks can have a status of To Do, In Progress, Blocked, or Done. You use the Blocked status when something is stopping you from completing a task. How to edit and delete project information You can edit any project or task except those created automatically from a QBO company—you can only hide or display those automatically created tasks using the From QuickBooks slider. Regardless of the view you’re displaying on the Work page, to edit any project or task you created, click any task in the project. QBOA then opens the Edit Project panel on the right side of the screen and displays the information of the task you clicked. You can change the project information by editing the top portion of the Edit Project panel. You can delete any project from the Edit Project panel by clicking the trash can icon in the lower left corner of the panel (see the following figure). Many of the projects you create are similar to each other, so save yourself some work and duplicate an existing project to create a new one. You also can use an existing project to create a template for subsequent similar projects. From the Edit Project panel, duplicate the project by clicking the Duplicate button. To create a template from the project, click Create Template. Although you can edit project and task information, you cannot change a project into a task or a task into a project. To close the Edit Project panel, click the X in the upper right corner of the panel. How to work in the List view The Grid view of the Work page is limited in what it can display because the cards take up quite bit of screen real estate. You can view your projects and tasks in List view, as shown here, by clicking the List View button in the upper right corner of the Work page (just below the Create Project button). From this view, you have additional filters available to you. In addition to filtering for a client, a team member, and a type of work (project, task, or client request), you also can filter by status and set a date range of interest to you. And, you can still edit any project or task; simply click anywhere on the project’s or task’s line to display the Edit Project panel shown earlier. How to work in the Calendar view The Calendar view displays the tasks due for any selected date. On the calendar, you’ll see the number of tasks due on each date. When you click a date, QBOA uses the right side of the Calendar view to show the tasks due on that date. Communicate with team members about work At the risk of stating the obvious, communication is paramount when working in a team environment. QBOA enables you to provide notifications by email for a variety of actions associated with the projects and tasks that appear on the Work page. To specify the notifications you want QBOA to send to your team, click the Notifications link at the top of Work page to display the Notifications tab of the Company Settings dialog box. Click the pencil in the upper right corner of the Email section to turn on and off email notifications for various actions that take place on the Work page. Click Save when you finish, followed by Done to return to QBOA. Each team member controls the notifications he receives. By default, each team member gets notifications of new assignments and due dates by default, but, to set up the rest of these notifications, each of your team members needs to log into his personal QBOA account and change these settings. If your organization uses Slack, a collaboration tool that helps your team connect, you can integrate Slack with QBOA. Add the app to QBOA by clicking Connect Now on the Work page. If you previously hid the ad for Slack, click the Connect Work to Slack button on the Notifications tab of the Company Settings dialog box. Slack offers a free version suitable for small teams wanting to try out Slack; the free version has some limitations. Slack also offers two “pay” versions: Standard and Plus; the cost of these versions depends on the number of active Slack users per month.

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Accountant Activities in QuickBooks Online Accountant

Article / Updated 10-26-2019

Accountants often need to reclassify transactions, examine voided and deleted transactions, write off invoices, and perform other activities. QuickBooks Online Accountant (QBOA) contains tools to make performing these activities easy. To view and use the tools QBOA makes available to accountants, open any client QBO company. Then, on the QBOA toolbar, click the Accountant Tools button (the one that looks like a suitcase). QBOA displays the Accountant Tools menu, shown here. The Prep for Taxes page in QBOA You use the Prep for Taxes tool to adjust and review accounts before preparing the client’s taxes. The Prep for Taxes page replaces the Trial Balance page. The page is well-designed to help you find accounts that need year-end adjustments and easily make them by providing a link to the Journal Entry transaction. The page you see initially presents a working trial balance like the one shown here. The values in the Unadjusted Balance column are locked on the page to protect the integrity of the data. If you click the carats beside the various headings (that is, Current Assets, Bank Accounts, and so on), you’ll find that you can click the Make Adjustment link in the Actions column beside an appropriate account to create adjusting journal entries for that account. When you click the link, QBOA opens a journal entry window, where you can record the adjusting entry—and QBOA automatically selects the Is Adjusting Journal Entry? check box. Once you save the entry, QBOA redisplays the Prep for Taxes page and indicates that you made a change (see the following figure). If you accept the change, QBOA updates the Prep for Taxes page to incorporate your adjustment; in addition, QBOA changes the Adjusted Balance column to reflect your adjustment. You can click any dollar value that appears as a link to view a report of all transactions that make up that balance. From the report, you can drill down to a particular transaction and, if necessary, change it. After you save the transaction and redisplay the report, you can click the Back to Prep for Taxes link at the top of the report page to redisplay the Prep for Taxes page. Once again, QBOA indicates that you made a change, and, after you accept the change, updates the Prep for Taxes page to incorporate the change. You can use the down arrow in the Actions column to add notes and attach documents to a particular line. This helps you remember why you made a particular adjustment. If you use ProConnect Tax Online, Intuit’s cloud-based tax preparation software, to prepare a client’s tax return, then you’ll want to make sure that your client’s accounts are mapped properly to lines on tax forms. The Prep for Taxes feature automatically maps most account balances to lines on tax forms you’ll file for corporations using IRS Form 1120 (for corporations) or 1120s, partnerships that use IRS Form 1065, nonprofits that use IRS Form 990, and sole proprietorships using IRS Form 1040. For other business organization types, you can manually assign accounts to tax form lines. You also can manually assign lines on tax forms for accounts the tool doesn’t recognize, and you can change tax line assignments as needed. Note that the View Tax Return button appears unavailable if you have not yet selected a tax form for the QBO client company. Click the Tax Mapping tab on the Prep for Taxes page to see the page you use to map last year’s client QBO company information directly into tax forms. If you haven’t yet selected a tax form for the QBO company, the first time you select the Tax Mapping tab, you’ll be prompted to select one. Or, you can click the Edit button (the pencil) beside the selected form at the bottom left side of the Prep for Taxes page and select a tax form. To assign an account to a tax form line or edit the line to which an account is assigned, click the Assign Tax Line link. QBOA displays the Assign Tax Line panel on the right side of the screen, which contains a list box from which you select the appropriate tax form line, and then click Save. When you finish reviewing the Prep for Taxes page and making adjustments to entries, you can click the Choose Tax Option button in the upper right corner of the page and then click Create New Return or Update Existing Return (as appropriate) to transfer the information to ProConnect Tax Online and generate a tax return. You don’t pay anything to use the Prep for Taxes feature; you pay only when you print or E-file a return from ProConnect Tax Online. If you don’t use ProConnect Tax Online or you are not the tax preparer, you have the option to export the adjustments to a comma-separated values (CSV) file (readable by Excel) so that you can import them into a separate application. Choose the Export CSV File option on the Choose Tax Return button. Reclassifying transactions in QBOA When you choose Reclassify Transactions from the Accountant Tools menu, the Reclassify Transactions page appears (see the following figure). You can use this page to reclassify transactions without worrying about the company’s closing date. You use the information in the Accounts section on the left side of the page and the Transactions section on the right side of the page to filter for the date range and type of accounts (Profit and Loss or Balance Sheet) you want to consider. You then select an account on the left side of the page, and QBOA displays transactions that meet the criteria on the right side of the page. You can reclassify, individually or as a group, transactions that display a green circle. Follow these steps to reclassify transactions: 1. On the left side of the page, set the date range you want to consider, along with the accounting basis. 2. From the View list box, select the type of accounts you want to consider—Profit & Loss accounts or Balance Sheet accounts. 3. Click an account in the list below the View list box to examine that account’s transactions. The transactions in the account appear on the right side of the page. 4. Above the list of transactions on the right side of the page, set filters to display the types of transactions that you might consider reclassifying. You can make changes to transactions that display green circles. You can also click a transaction to open it in its transaction window and then make changes to it. 5. To change several transactions simultaneously, select them by clicking the check box beside them. 6. Below the list of transactions, select the For Select Transactions, Change check box. 7. From the Account To list, specify a different account. If Class Tracking is turned on, you’ll also see a field to change the assigned class, the same way you can change an account. 8. Click the Reclassify button. Examining voided and deleted transactions You can click Voided/Deleted Transactions on the Accountant Tools menu to display the Audit Log. The default view of the Audit Log (see the following figure) shows information about those transactions that have been voided or deleted. But, you can click the Filter button to set a variety of different filters to view other types of transactions and events. Writing off invoices Choosing Write Off Invoices from the Accountant Tools menu displays the Write Off Invoices page, which enables you to view invoices you might want to write off, and then write them off to an account of your choice. At the top of the page, you set filters to display the invoices you want to review. Select the age of the invoices to view those Greater than 180 days Greater than 120 days In the current accounting period In a custom date range you set You also can set a balance limit. As shown in the following figure, QBOA displays the date, age, invoice number, customer name, original invoice amount, and the amount still due on the invoice. To write off any invoices, click the check box beside them. Then, at the bottom of the page, select the account you want to use to write off the invoices and click the Preview and Write Off button. The Write Off feature does not make adjusting entries in the current period; instead, it makes adjustments in the period in which the transaction was originally created—and can negatively affect closed periods. To write off an item in a closed period, see this online article. QBOA displays the Confirm Write Off dialog box shown in the following figure. If the information in the dialog box is correct, click Write Off. Otherwise, click Cancel. Closing the books You use the Close Books command on the Accountant Tools menu to display the Advanced page of the QBO company’s Account and Settings dialog box, shown in the following figure. You can click anywhere in the Accounting section to edit the fields in that section, which include the closing date for the books. You can set a closing date and then allow changes prior to the closing date after QBO issues a warning, or you can require a password to enter changes prior to the closing date. Click Done to save your changes. Reviewing reports in QBOA QBOA contains some reports of particular interest to accountants. If you open a client QBO company and then, from the Accountant Tools menu, click Accountant Reports, the Reports page appears. Reports marked as favorites appear first and, if you scroll down, you’ll find all the reports organized into various groups. The Reports in the For My Accountant group (most appear in the following figure) might be of particular interest to you because it contains reports like the Adjusted Trial Balance report, the Adjusting Journal Entries report, and more. When you’re checking out these reports, be sure to scroll down the page. To make any of these reports appear at the top of the Reports page (so that you don’t need to scroll down), click the star beside the report to mark it as a favorite. If you choose Management Reports from the Accountant Tools menu (or if you click the Management Reports tab that appears on the Reports page shown), QBOA lists two customized management-style reports: Basic Company Financials and Expanded Company Financials. Both reports display a collection of reports, complete with an elegant cover page and a table of contents. Click the View link in the Action column for either report to view them onscreen, or download them to your computer as PDF files. The Expanded Company Financials report contains the P&L, Balance Sheet, Statement of Cash Flows, and the A/R Aging Detail and A/P Aging Detail reports. The Basic Company Financials report contains all reports except the Aging Detail reports. If you click the down arrow in the Actions column and then click Edit, you can edit either report package to add or delete reports and modify the appearance of pages in the report, including determining whether pages such as the table of contents appear in the report. Using the same down arrow in the Action column, you can send these reports via email, export the information to PDF files or DOCX files, and make copies of them so that you can make your own set of management reports. Copying one of these reports before you change it is a great idea; that way, you keep the original report intact but create your own version of it as well. If you choose My Custom Reports from the Accountant Tools menu or the Custom Reports tab on the Reports page, reports you have customized and saved appear. And you can click Reports Tools on the Accountant Tools menu to set default report dates and the accounting basis. You also can see account reconciliation status for cash and credit card accounts and view and set company closing date information. Be aware that any changes you make using Report Tools resets all default report dates and the accounting basis, even if you run the report from the Reports screen. So, if your report comes up using an unexpected set of dates or accounting basis, check the values set under Report Tools. Also on the Accountant Tools menu, you’ll find the Reports Tools command. When you choose this command, QBOA displays the Report and Tool Defaults page, which enables you to set default dates you want to use for reports and tools in the client QBO company. These default dates don’t apply to payroll reports, because Payroll is a separate product, nor do they apply to Quick Reports, which you run from the Chart of Accounts page; the Quick Reports period automatically defaults to Since 90 Days Ago. The Report and Tool Defaults page also shows whether the books are closed and provides a button to close the books, and the page shows you the reconciliation status of bank and credit card accounts. A brief look at other accountant tools in QBOA The Accountant Tools menu contains a few other tools that make an accountant’s life easier, such as the Reconcile page; from this page, you can opt to reconcile an account you select, or you can review existing reconciliation reports. Also, from the Accountant Tools menu, you can choose Journal Entries to display the Journal Entry window, or Chart of Accounts to display the Chart of Accounts window. You also can use the New Window command to quickly open a new window in QBOA. Last, from the Accountant Tools menu, you can choose ProConnect Tax Online, which opens a new browser window and takes you to the Tax Hub of ProConnect Tax Online, where you can see the status of your clients’ tax returns. ProConnect Tax Online connects to your QBOA account but is actually a separate product with its own menus in the Navigation bar.

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The QuickBooks Online Dashboard Page

Article / Updated 10-26-2019

When you first see your company in QuickBooks Online, your Dashboard page contains boxes with links to options you can use to set up features in QBO that are important to you. You can use those links and set up those options during setup, or you can wait until later. To hide the options, click Hide in the upper right corner of the box. Don’t worry, you can still set up the options associated with any of these boxes; in the following figure, notice the Resume Setup link in the upper right corner of the Dashboard. Click it to redisplay the setup options. And, once you close the boxes, your Dashboard page displays information specific to your company. In the center of the figure, using most of the Dashboard page real estate, you find information that changes depending on what you have clicked while using QBO. For example, when you initially open QBO, the information is overview company information. If you click an entry in the Navigation bar (on the left side of the screen), the information in the center of the Dashboard page changes to information related to the entry you clicked. If you select an option on the Gear menu (discussed later in this section), the information you see relates to the option you select. You might have noticed the Privacy button in the figure. You can use this button to temporarily hide financial information on your Dashboard page. For example, you might want to turn Privacy on if you’re using QuickBooks in a public place or even in your office when you’re not alone. After you turn Privacy on, it remains on until you turn it off again. The Navigation bar runs down the left side of the screen. You use the Navigation bar the same way you’d use a menu; click an item in the Navigation bar to, well, navigate to that part of QBO. For example, you can click Sales in the Navigation bar to see existing sales transactions in QBO and to create a new Sales transaction. The highlighted entry in the Navigation bar helps you identify the section of QBO that you are using. On the right side of the Dashboard page, you find a list of the bank accounts you’ve set up; if you scroll to the bottom of the list, you find options to connect your accounts to their banks, select an account and open its register, and view all activity, which is the audit log in QBO. The audit log lists every transaction created, changed, or deleted in QBO, as well as every instance of someone logging in to and out of QBO. When you click the Help button, you see a menu of common topics QBO thinks might be of interest to you, and you can type in the Search box to find help on a particular topic. For example, when you click the Create a New QuickBooks Online Company or Companies (US Only) link, QBO displays the How to Create a New QuickBooks Online Company or Companies page, which provides instructions for that topic. At the right edge of the top of the screen, you see two transaction-related buttons that display lists you can use to work with transactions. The following figure shows the Create menu that appears when you click the Create button, which appears as a plus sign (+) when the menu is closed and an X when the menu is open. The next figure shows what you see when you click the Search button, which appears as a magnifying glass to the right of the Create menu button. You see a list of recently entered transactions; you can click any transaction in the list to open that transaction. Or, you can use the Search Transactions box to search for a transaction. To the right of the two transaction-related buttons, you see the Gear button. If you click the Gear button, you see the menu shown in the following figure, which you use to look at and change QBO company settings; view lists; work with tools such as import and export, reconciliation, and budgeting tools; and view information about your QBO account. Note that the Gear menu is divided into four columns that organize related commands.

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3 Handy Tool Buttons in QuickBooks Online

Article / Updated 06-02-2019

In QuickBooks Online (QBO), at the top of the window, tools are available to help you find your way. You can view recent transactions or search for transactions, create transactions, or perform other actions not related to transactions. Be aware that, if you’re working in QBOA and you open a QBO company, the tools vary somewhat. The tools on this cheat sheet are for a client working in a QBO company. Click the plus sign (+), which then changes to an X, to open the Create menu and select a transaction to create. Click the magnifying glass to view a list of recent transactions and to search for transactions. To open a recent transaction, click it to open it in its transaction window. Type any identifying information or click Advanced Search to specify more detailed search criteria. Click the Gear button to display the Gear menu, which helps you perform a variety of tasks in QBO other than entering transactions.

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17 Keyboard Shortcuts for QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Online Accountant

Article / Updated 06-02-2019

Keyboard shortcuts can help you save time. By using keyboard shortcuts, you can keep your hands on the keyboard when you enter information in QBO or QBOA. Mac users, substitute Option for Alt in the following tables. To Press Open the Check window Ctrl+Alt+W Open the Expense window Ctrl+Alt+X Open the Estimate window Ctrl+Alt+E Open the Invoice Transaction window Ctrl+Alt+I Open the Receive Payment window Ctrl+Alt+R Display Help Ctrl+Alt+H Display the Lists page Ctrl+Alt+L Display the Customers page Ctrl+Alt+C Display the Vendors page Ctrl+Alt+V Display the Chart of Accounts page Ctrl+Alt+A Display the Search Transactions page Ctrl+Alt+F Display keyboard shortcuts Ctrl+Alt+/ Use these keyboard shortcuts while working in a transaction window: To Press Save the transaction and starts a new one Ctrl+Alt+S Save the transaction and close the transaction window Ctrl+Alt+D Save and send the transaction Ctrl+Alt+M Print the transaction Ctrl+Alt+P Close the transaction window; if you've made changes, a message asks you to confirm that you want to close the window without saving your changes Ctrl+Alt+X or Ctrl+Alt+C

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